A great loss to all folk fans was the death of Siwsann George in 2005, following years of fighting against cancer.
Siwsann George had bought Welsh song to the world, renowned for her deeply moving performances of the music of her land. Raised in the Rhondda Valley, she graduated at Aberystwyth and at the Welsh College of Music and Drama.
As founder and lead singer of number one roots band Mabsant, Siwsann had sung on four continents, accompanying herself on harp, guitar, concertia and spoons, her tours including much work on behalf of The British Council.
Her research, publication of folksong, reports of her travels for radio, teaching work, competition and recording successes all won her great acclaim. In 1985 and 1992, she was adjudicator for the BBC’s “Song of Wales” contest and for the Celtavision in 1992 and 1993 in Ireland. Siwsann’s “finely woven voice with a gilded edge” can often be heard as theme music on film and television. Her 1994 solo CD “Traditional Songs of Wales” (Saydisc) was a landmark in her own career and in the history of Welsh music, and was followed by her appearances at major venues such as The Purcell Room, St Albans’ Organ Festival and the RSC’s Swan Theatre, Stratford Upon Avon.
The best of Mabsant music, with her colleagues Stuart Brown, Steve Whitehead and Robin Huw Bowen, is heard on “Mabsant – Y goreuon ar Sain“.
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